Does the name Lonnie Ballentine mean anything to you? If not, don’t worry. Most people don’t know him and odds are they won’t. He was the last person picked this year in the NFL draft and is given the title “Mr. Irrelevant”. They name the last person drafted Mr. Irrelevant because odds are that they won’t make the team they were drafted to. While they get the honor of being drafted, they may never step foot onto a professional football field. The last person picked is just a formality. It’s a pick that means nothing. There are hundreds more that didn’t get drafted that feel irrelevant too.
It reminds me of school yard basketball, dodgeball or anything team related. Two people pick teams. Little by little the crowd is whittled down until one remains. The one team captain says, “You can have them.” The other one sees them as a disadvantage too and says, “No. You take them.” Neither one wants to take the last one there and care very little for their feelings. It’s tough feeling irrelevant. It hurts when that label has been applied to you. Sooner or later, you start to believe it and start acting that way.
What you may not know is that through the years, there are a number of people that were drafted as “Mr. Irrelevant” that made the team. There were several that had great careers and even one who went with his team to the Super Bowl. These men chose not to let the label define them. They didn’t look at the odds, the circumstances or history and decide to fall in line. They chose to be relevant. They chose to work harder, do more and make the team. They didn’t let a label placed on them choose their destiny.
You may be reading this today with the mindset that you’re irrelevant. Maybe you weren’t picked for the job. Maybe no one remembered it was your birthday. Maybe no one appreciates all you do to make ends meet. The enemy wants to come in and tell you that your life is irrelevant. He wants nothing more than to kill, steal and destroy you. Don’t listen to the lies that say you are irrelevant. That your life is worthless. That no one wants you. That your life has no meaning. You mean more to God than you can ever comprehend. Your dark times are the very thing that will make you relevant.
There are so many people who are and will go through something similar to your circumstances. God needs someone who’s been there, walked in those shoes and dealt with the pain of feeling irrelevant in order to help them. He needs you to draw on your experiences to give hope to those who have none. Being picked last is a blessing. It means that God can use you to reach others who will be picked last. He makes beauty from ashes. He has to let your life be torn down sometimes in order to build it back up. He can take a life that seems irrelevant and make it relevant. It’s up to us to not give up during those times so He can make what you’re going through relevant.